A young Thai boy was full of faith that music would heal his mother from cancer. He used to play on the streets to earn money and help her with the treatment, but get bullied in school because his music didn’t sound “right”.
Later on it turned out that his guitar was just out of tune and had to be tuned for the song to flow better.
Many people enjoy listening to music; it relaxes them and helps them think clearly. For cancer patients, it also can be a way to cope with some of the symptoms of their disease and side effects of their treatment.
Researches show that listening to recorded music, called music therapy, improves anxiety, pain, mood swings; it improves the quality of life, the heart and respiratory rate, and blood pressure in cancer patients.
The researchers in Drexel University had a total of 1 891 patients. They conducted sessions with a trained musical therapist and with recorded music played by the medical staff.
The selections included classical, jazz, folk, rock, country and western, as well as new age and religious. The researchers noticed and measured a significant improvement in anxiety and the patients’ moods. They also noted small improvements in heart rate, blood pressure and pain salvation.
Even with those results, it is still not possible to tell if music therapy or recorded music actually helps patients heal faster, because they were aware that they were getting treatment and could have been having the placebo effect – thinking that they are getting better and telling doctors that they are so. In any case, this is no bad result, we just cannot be sure that music is the thing that actually helps.
So, did the Thai boy really save his mother? His out of tune guitar probably wasn’t the best medicine, but his heart of gold and the love he showered his mother with was the best treatment she could get.
So, yes, music did help, in its own way, to heal the mother, give the boy hope that he could channel to her too and help him make friends, to play on the streets with.
We don’t know if music can heal the body, but it can surely heal the soul.